Jasmine Reed The Author: Why are memes important?
Meme Gourmet: Ha! That’s a good one! As far as I can tell, memes aren’t going to change the world, at least not anytime soon. But they’re also not the trivial and easily-dismissed creative outlet that some people think they are. Don’t get me wrong… Am I doing the kind of work that a guy like John Oliver is doing, with all the investigative reporting he does? Not even close. Am I brightening a few thousand people’s day, even for just a few seconds? Hopefully. And that’s enough for me.
Jasmine Reed The Author: Where did you get the name?
Meme Gourmet: Since as long as I can remember, memes have been flat-out shitty. We think of memes and what comes to mind are low resolution pictures. They’re pixelated, blurry, and with that awful Impact font. On Instagram it’s even worse, because most of what’s posted has been screenshotted, resized, and reposted dozens of times, degrading the image more and more and more. Kind of like when your high school History teacher handed out readings that were clearly a photocopy of a photocopy of a photocopy. I wanted to flip that whole “low quality” trope on its head. If the memes you’re used to are from a fast-food joint, I wanted my account to be a Michelin star restaurant. High resolution, crisp pictures, funny, and most importantly original… not trashy but “gourmet” if you will.
Jasmine Reed The Author: Have you considered selling merchandise with memes on them?
Meme Gourmet: I made my mind up pretty early on that I would never advertise merch on @memegourmet. It’s a cheap move, and it taints the relationship I’m trying to build with my followers. There’s a trust there. I’m doing what I do to make some strangers laugh. Now all of a sudden I’m trying to reach into their wallet for a quick buck? Nah. That’s not for me.
Jasmine Reed The Author: Any advice for anyone trying to grow their social media following?
Meme Gourmet: Before you start, figure out your brand. Your brand needs to be memorable, unique, and your behavior needs to be consistent with that brand. I hate to use an example like this, but do you remember the “Cash Me Ousside” girl? Yeah, she has 12 million followers on Instagram now, and the beginnings of a hip hop career. Why? I can tell you, it’s definitely not talent! What it is is her brand: a unique look, a unique way of talking, and she never deviates from it. Am I fan of hers? Not a chance. But I respect what she’s doing (or at least what her business managers are telling her to do)!
Jasmine Reed The Author: What are your goals for the future?
Meme Gourmet: That’s a great question. I’m 25 and still in the “figuring things out” part of my life. I have a kick-ass job in advertising that’s enough to keep me going for now, but at some point I’d like to make a radical lane change. Something completely different. Maybe start my own business? But for now, memes will have to do!
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Jasmine Reed The Author is Editor-in-Chief of 716 Live and an independent job recruiter. To collaborate with 716 Live, email email@example.com. Send your resume to firstname.lastname@example.org to get matched to jobs worldwide! Thanks for reading. 🙂